Building a power link in north-eastern Poland: taking Baltic States closer to European electricity market

The construction of 117 km of overhead power lines between the towns of Ostrołęka and Narew in Poland is one of a number of upgrades that will pave the way for a high capacity interconnection between Poland and Lithuania.

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Because of limited interconnection capacity, trade in electricity is currently hampered between Poland and other EU member states. The lack of transmission capacity means that Poland is currently capable of exporting and importing only relatively small amounts of electricity from other countries.

One of the main transmission bottlenecks is the lack of a direct electricity interconnection between Poland and neighbouring Lithuania. To address the problem, the Polish utility company PSE Operator is committed to implementing a number of projects – of which the 400-kilovolt power line between Ostrołęka and Narew is one – that will provide the Polish electricity grid with sufficient capacity to import (and eventually export) large amounts of electricity from Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia.

When construction work on the projects is completed by 2015, the Poland-Lithuania link will connect the electricity market of the Baltic region with that of Central and Eastern Europe, which is one of the five synchronously connected markets of continental Europe.

Making Europe’s electricity grid fit for purpose

Taken together, the upgrade projects will help remove barriers to the functioning of the European energy market and the European transmission system. As well as stabilising Poland’s internal electricity supply grid, the projects will contribute to achieving the Baltic Energy Market Interconnection Plan, which was launched to better interconnect the Baltic region.

The EUR 121.6 million project to build a new power line between Ostrołęka and Narew includes fitting existing substations at Ostrołęka and Narew with 400 kV switchgear.

Total and EU funding

The project “Construction of the Ostrołęka-Narew line and modernisation of the stations at Ostrołęka and Narew as part of the Poland-Lithuania power link project” has a total budget of EUR 121 600 000 of which the EU’s European Regional Development Fund has assigned a contribution of EUR 63 500 000 for the 2007 to 2013 programming period. The national contribution will be EUR 44 247 648. The project is funded through the priority “Extension and modernisation of water and wastewater systems” of the Operational Programme “Infrastructure and Environment”.

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